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Swimming and diving preview: making waves to start the season

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The Monticello swimming and diving team is off to a great start, coached by Mike Stein along with assistant coaches Myranda Urick, Heather Peterson and Kristen Zalec.

Their record over all last year was 8-2 and their conference record was 5-2.

The team is filled with too many returning letter winners to list.

The 2019-20 captains are Emerson Brooks and Grace Farnsworth.

The lost nine seniors from last season including: Bree Wolkerstorfer, Caitlin Hegle, Sarah Popp, Ellie Anselment, Faith Bloomdahl, Maggie Oliverius, Hope Meierhoffer, Shaylee Hoefling and Mima Hammerl.

Coach Stein commented on how those graduated will be missed, but will provide motivation for this years’ athletes.

“We relied heavily on our seniors for their leadership both in and out of the pool,” he said. “Their positive personalities helped shape the great team morale that we experienced last year. Additionally, that group was responsible for a majority of points scored during competitions. We have big holes to fill in our line up.”

It will be a team effort to fill those said “holes”.

“We need all f our team members to step up this year if we hope to see similar successes to last year. As a coaching staff we are really excited about the performance we have seen out of our incoming seventh graders. Many of them are coming to us with years worth of experience in our local swim club. The transition to team has been quick and many of them contributed at the varsity level in the first meet of the year.”

Teams at the top of coach Stein’s list are St. Michael/Albertville.

“Though they left our conference, we will still compete against them in a non-conference meet,” he said. “They are always a strong team but really push us to do our best.”

The swimming and diving team, as many other Monti teams, have their sights set on being conference champions.

“There are many great teams that will make that a tough goal to reach, but we are excited about the challenge,” Stein said.

As for Granite Ridge, Stein predicts two top competitors.

“Foley and Sauk Rapids continue to be strong opponents,” the head coach said. “We will be doing our best to match up with their talented and deep line ups.”

Reach Jessie Meyen at jessie.meyen@ecm-inc.com

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